Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Action 53

Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Action 53
by on (#128446)
The results are up, and downloads are available!

http://nesdevcompo.nintendoage.com/contest14/

Thanks to everyone who voted and participated this year. Keep your eyes open for details regarding the multicart compilation. Also, feel free to submit something for Category 3, or anything else you would like to be considered for the cartridge.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128449)
How many time is left until we can submit material for the cartridge ?

I have still much work to do, and the whole May month will be pretty full for me with real life even which means I won't be able to progress a lot.

Namely, I have 5 more bosses to implement (their design is done on paper, but I have to actually do it for real), and probably some more random/small enemies to implement, and 2-3 more musical pieces to compose (I was able to compose 3 of them the same afternoon last months, it was quite amazing, unfortunately it takes times for inspiration to come, and then it's sometimes hard to remember it when you had a good idea for a song.
Also I'll probably have to do more compression tricks as I'm slowly running out of my 32kb PRG space (currently 12% of PRG-ROM remains free).

So overall, for keeping realistic, don't think I can come with anything complete before the end of July.
If the cart is going to be released before, I could try and submit a sample of the game where only 1 level is playable. It would probably fit in 32kb PRG + 8kb CHR, or 32kb PRG + 16kb CHR if I include some title screen too. Pehaps I could even squeeze it in 16kb PRG but I can't promise anything.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128451)
The original plan was June 1st, with July 1st being the goal for release date. This of course depends on a lot of volunteer work so those dates might be a bit optimistic.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128452)
Good job everyone. I especially liked Love Story, Double Action Blaster Guys and Auge.

WhatULive4 wrote:
Also, feel free to submit something for Category 3, or anything else you would like to be considered for the cartridge.

For the record, I nominate Magic Floor. nocash would have to give permission of course.

WhatULive4 wrote:
The original plan was June 1st...

Oh boy, I better get going then. (I most likely have post a request for some music composition later)
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128455)
The original plan for volume 2 was for me to make a new menu that looks like a desktop computer. I was wondering if that was still the plan or if could just use the same menu as volume 1.
  • A fake POST screen would provide some time for the player to request serial boot. I'd need a working serial boot cable in order to test this.
  • The menu would look roughly like a Windows or GS/OS desktop. But there turned out to be not many "apps".
  • My effort would be split between adding the promised weapons to RHDE and polishing the menu.
  • I wonder what sort of "headliner" game someone might submit for category 3.

I don't plan to include Dig Deeper until a big update because as it is, it's even less of a game than the games in Action 52.

To do:
  • Download all entries to volume 2 folder
  • Play through all games with write breakpoint on CPU $8000-$FFFF
  • Play through all CHR ROM-using games with on write breakpoint on PPU $0000-$1FFF
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128474)
Honestly I think I'll wait for the next compo to release my (still unfinished) game, I don't have much time to program and it would be nice to have some headstart on the next competition... if it is allowed of course (I don't think it isn't by reading the rules though). I can expand in the design and make it better for a 32 KiB rom instead of trying to cram everything into 8 (my game is a sokoban kind of game, and currently only 15 unique metatiles are allowed to be placed on the map grid to reduce map size :lol:)

Needless to say I loved most if not all of the entries. Thanks for the hard work everyone! Cheers! :beer:
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128491)
The deadline is really whenever we decide we've got the final rom ready to publish in reality. I think the goal we originally set is a good target, although as WhatULive4 brought up that might push depending on everyone involved.

For those who want to make improvements and hoping to get their entry in before the cart build I would suggest going for it. Worst case it's still not ready in time and you've got good progress already made for next years entry. We haven't finalized this idea yet, but everyone I've mentioned it to has thought it would be beneficial. The idea is to have more of a year round effort on the compo entries. Now that we've got some momentum behind us again hopefully people will have enough faith that the upcoming compo will go off without too many hitches and their year round effort will have a the opportunity to pay off nicely when the deadline finally arrives that year.

tepples wrote:
The original plan for volume 2 was for me to make a new menu that looks like a desktop computer. I was wondering if that was still the plan or if could just use the same menu as volume 1.
Like you bring up the app category didn't really take off as we had hoped. I don't see a lot of value in changing things heavily compared to volume1. IMO feel free to put in the POST or whatever else you'd like, but don't feel like we're expecting it, or that it's a necessity.

Quote:
would provide some time for the player to request serial boot. I'd need a working serial boot cable in order to test this.
I still have a cable for you sitting on my shelf. Blargg asked me to test it and make sure all was working before I sent it you way which I agreed with. But I question when I'll get around to setting everything up to test it, perhaps it's best for me to send it to you as-is and prevent further delay. Let me know what you think.

Quote:
My effort would be split between adding the promised weapons to RHDE and polishing the menu.
I would say your time would be better spent tweaking/improving anything in your entry instead of reworking your whole menu again.

Quote:
I wonder what sort of "headliner" game someone might submit for category 3.
I don't see a headliner in sight, but I could be wrong. I think we have more than enough room to add any category 3 entries for people interested in getting their game on the cart. If anyone else would like to add their somewhat recent work I think it would be welcome at this point.

Quote:
I don't plan to include Dig Deeper until a big update because as it is, it's even less of a game than the games in Action 52.
Agreed, in hind sight I probably should have bumped it down to cat3. But it doesn't really matter at this point, I never intended it to be included in the cart at it's current state. ;)

As for prizes, I've got the money in route to paypal so I should be able to pay everyone out via paypal this weekend. I'll gather people's info via email/PM by then. And I've purchased some SNES mice to get prepared for the cat3 prizes as well.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128519)
Great, I (probably) can finish a game within a month for category 3 (UNROM).

Don't want to be rude, but for clarity sake, MilioNESy is listed as fifth game in the compo list while having more points than Sliding Blaster, did someone make a mistake while writing points for Sliding Blaster?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128520)
I think only the top 3 get prizes, and sort order below the top 3 matters less.

And did someone forget about Waixing's 匹诺曹的复苏 (Pǐnuòcáo de fùsū / The Recovery of Pinocchio, ES-1080) when writing a question whose answer is Pinocchio?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128523)
Well, the sorting continues below and I just...nah, forget it. Sorry, if my earlier question sounded strange\rude.

I had no idea a Pinnochio game for famicom exists...thanks for pointing that out. Still, the question is about playing as a character on NES not famicom, so I will not change it, unless more people will have problem with it.
...Well, you could use adapter to play the game on NES, hmmm...
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128524)
"NES not Famicom" is what I thought too until I saw the Cocoron question.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128525)
Denine wrote:
Great, I (probably) can finish a game within a month for category 3 (UNROM).

Don't want to be rude, but for clarity sake, MilioNESy is listed as fifth game in the compo list while having more points than Sliding Blaster, did someone make a mistake while writing points for Sliding Blaster?


Yes, that was a typo.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128528)
Any idea when judges' comments will be released? I'm looking for some constructive criticism.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128533)
tepples wrote:
Any idea when judges' comments will be released? I'm looking for some constructive criticism.


There weren't any comments requested in the judging process. If anyone has any comments regarding RHDE, please post them on the related forum thread.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128704)
Category 1 cash prizes have been paid out, enjoy your winnings!

The SNES mice have arrived in the mail from ebay sellers. Once I get the cords together I'll be able to ship out cat2 prizes less carts. If there is no rush on recieving the SNES mouse I can hold them to ship with the cart prizes, otherwise I can send em out asap no prob. Let me know if you care one way or the other.

Also, my NES case mold is officially stamping out cases now. So that shouldn't hold us back from a cartridge release like it did last year. Any thoughts as to a special color for the contributor cartridges? There was good feedback from the clear choice last year, although people will probably be disappointed they won't have the option to buy clear. More motivation to contribute next year! ;) If we'd like to do some other opaque color I could put in an order for that dye as well. nesdev purple sounds nice too... I think it's best to stick with standard grey for the main release though.

As for other games to try and include in the cart, it looks like the cat3 entries would be good additions especially if the flight mini games is able to become more complete in time. I'm not sure the story behind why Auge is cat3 vice cat1. But if Krill has interest in letting us include it, I think it'd be enjoyed by many. DABG looks like a good add too!

I'm not sure how we're doing on space with everything. But I did get permission via PM from na_th_an to include Sir Abadolto the next volume. I asked about Sgt Helmet as well as I think he's responsible for that one as well, but I haven't yet got a response on that one.

Additionally Roth was interested in letting us include his snail maze in the first volume, but we didn't get permission in time. Perhaps he'd be interested in including it in volume2.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128865)
I'm working on combining the category 2 entries into a single PRG bank. The more efficiently I pack programs, the more category 3 entries we can include on a 4 Mbit cart. I have source code for SFX Editor. Are there any parts of RAM that PCB Artist and Theremin are guaranteed not to use, so that I can use those addresses for NMI dispatch?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128915)
Here's a copy of the source code for PCB artist if it's of any use.

I'm not using $0400-04FF in SRAM.

Oh and I fixed the embarrasing typo in my name on the title screen and changed the directions for the B button as multilayers is not yet implemented. The build is included in that .zip above.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128939)
infiniteneslives wrote:
[PCB Artist is] not using $0400-04FF in SRAM.

Neither is SFX editor. Now I have their NMIs routing through $04FA.

Quote:
Oh and I fixed the embarrasing typo

Thanks. Now I have all three category 2 entries in one 32K PRG bank.

The first preview version of the second volume's multicart is attached. Category 1 and 2 mostly work, except for a corrupted "Red Moon Games" intro, which I assume to be due to lack of mirroring control in the current menu software. If your emulator doesn't play mapper 28, change the mapper to 34 and everything but Theremin should still work.

My next steps:
  • Make tool to combine two NROM-128 games into one bank (which is a lot simpler for mapper 28 than mapper 34)
  • Patch Denine's entries to explicitly set mirroring
  • Start adding category 3
  • Keep polishing RHDE
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128946)
Theremin isn't using $2B-$FF or $47E-$7FF. When's the deadline for getting bug fixes submitted for the carts?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128953)
tepples wrote:
Thanks. Now I have all three category 2 entries in one 32K PRG bank.

I'm guessing there's still enough ROM space in that bank for my entry. If I finish it, what address should I build it at?

tepples wrote:
... NMIs routing through $04FA.

noted.

tepples wrote:
...lack of mirroring control the current menu software...

Should I add some code to set my entry to Single-screen?

Edit: on second thought I could assume horizontal mirroring, and make it work for both single-screen (AxROM) and horizontal mirroring.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#128966)
$8000-$9FFF (8K) is still open in the "Apps 3-pack" bank, as is $CC00-$DFFF (5K).

Yes, you can change mirroring if needed. Use this, where mirrtype is $00 (single screen), $02 (PA10, vertical mirroring), or $03 (PA11, horizontal mirroring):
Code:
  LDA #$80
  STA $5000
  LDA #mirrtype
  STA $8000
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129006)
I'm having second thoughts about including certain games in their current states.
  • Pong 198x title: "Pong" is a trademark of Atari.
  • Pong 198x copyright: A lot of its graphics and musical cues appear ripped straight from Nintendo products.
  • Pong 198x quality: Play is more frustrating than that of a similar game included in volume 1. The gimmicks are unpredictable, it's next to impossible to return a serve, there's no way to control the direction of the return, etc.
  • Sliding Blaster quality: Severe control issues without a mouse. The developer has reassured me that he will work on this once the school year ends in a few weeks.

As Shigeru Miyamoto put it: "A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad." Action 52 was rushed, and I want to be one better. Consider that the first Action 53 volume drew from two compos (see "I Wanna Flip the Sky" for the other) and had ample time to fill its equivalent of category 3.

Finally, a lesson learned: Require app entries in the next compo to route NMI through a vector in RAM.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129017)
tepples wrote:
I'm having second thoughts about including certain games in their current states. (Pong 198x title):


Yeah I brought this up with WhatULive4 previously. I appreciate the entry to the compo, and think we should still award the special edition cartridge. However, because of the trademark/copyright issues, it's not safe for us to include in the multicart. I beleive this falls along the lines of how we intended to handle entries if they didn't have appropriate material. Submit whatever you please into the compo, but it's not guaranteed to be included on the multi cart. If the trademark/copyright issues were removed, along with the frustrations I would be willing to entertain it's inclusion to the cart.

I could go either way on Sliding blaster. If the developer has bigger and a more complete game play planned, I'd question if they'd really like to include a partial build. Putting a partial game in this year will only tarnish a complete game in a future cart.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129022)
infiniteneslives wrote:
I could go either way on Sliding blaster. If the developer has bigger and a more complete game play planned, I'd question if they'd really like to include a partial build. Putting a partial game in this year will only tarnish a complete game in a future cart.

Assuming this laptop doesn't finally give out and/or I finally get a replacement (edit: on a new laptop with all my source still), once finals and big projects are out of the way I do fully intend on finishing Sliding Blaster and putting the last thing I wanted in DABG before the carts are made. I'm also open to suggestions as to how I can improve play with a controller in SB while keeping the same gameplay.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129027)
NovaSquirrel wrote:
Assuming this laptop doesn't finally give out

Make sure to back everything up to Dropbox so that if all else fails, I can help you get ca65 going on the mother in law computer.

Quote:
I'm also open to suggestions as to how I can improve play with a controller in SB while keeping the same gameplay.

I've added my suggestion in a new topic about Sliding Blaster. (Spoiler: Make it handle like Gyruss.)
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129062)
For the moment I've removed Sliding Blaster and Pong 198x and added DABG and Sir Ababol, and we still have 8 32K banks left. So with a running total of 7 games (compo top 4 + DABG, PCB, Ababol) and 2 toys, these remain:
  • Polish Sliding Blaster, DABG, and RHDE
  • Sanitize Pong 198x
  • Fix the mirroring for Function and MilioNESy
  • Ask Roth about more games to include (PM sent 05-23)
  • Ask about Sgt. Helmet Training Day
  • Get me a serial boot cable so that I can stash the client in the app bank
  • Ask Krill to slim Auge down to 16K if possible so I can pair it with another 16K game; I noticed it had a lot of unused space
  • Make sure everything has a screenshot and a description
  • Choose a headliner for the label and title screen
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129082)
I just received a PM from Roth granting permission through PM to include Snail Maze Game.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129083)
Nice.

While trying to find a lost file in my archives, I saw Chase by Shiru, the example game for Programming NES games in C. I kind of miss seeing a game by Shiru. So would it be OK to include this? (it's marked "Public Domain")

As for the headliner, oddly enough I'm always thinking of DABG because of the word "action". That would make a easy to remember pack name of something like "Double Action Pack".
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129099)
Made some changes in my entries.

MilioNESy:
Function:
  • Now player can hold B button to speed up function execution.
  • Some small changes in code.

Also, both ROMs now set mirroring by doing:
Code:
lda #$80
 sta $5000
 lda #$03
 sta $8000


I have a small problem with milioNESy-doing a sta $8000 changes bank at $8000 in some emulators (Nestopia and Nintendulator). The ROM works fine in FCEU, though. The thing is, UNROM is supposed to have bus conflicts, so I need to write to a ROM location that have same value as I'm writing. I know, I know, I checked the value at $8000 and it is 0x8E, shouldn't it be 0x03 for me to be able to switch bank?

I attached both ROMs, I can send source code, if MilioNESy will not work when combined with action53.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129100)
Denine wrote:
Changed one question's answer to "SHREK", if that's ok.

Perfect. (Shrek and Pinocchio appear together in Shrek Super Slam for GameCube, but that's three console generations after the era that MilioNESy covers.)

Quote:
I have a small problem with milioNESy-doing a sta $8000 changes bank at $8000 in some emulators (Nestopia and Nintendulator).

I thought Nestopia was discontinued before mapper 28 was created. And try setting the ROM's mapper to 0 or 34 instead of 2 to keep the bankswitch from affecting the lower 16K.

Quote:
The ROM works fine in FCEU, though. The thing is, UNROM is supposed to have bus conflicts, so I need to write to a ROM location that have same value as I'm writing. I know, I know, I checked the value at $8000 and it is 0x8E, shouldn't it be 0x03 for me to be able to switch bank?

Though mapper 28 isn't supposed to have bus conflicts, some emulators might either A. have a faulty implementation or B. not support mapper 28 at all. But the data port at $8000 is available throughout $8000-$FFFF. So you can do this:
Code:
 lda #$80
 sta $5000
bcavoid:
 lda #$03
 sta bcavoid+1

I will try the new ROMs on my PowerPak tonight. Thank you for the update.

Tonight: Replace MilioNESy, replace Function, add Chase, add Snail Maze, draw a title screen
Tomorrow: Work on interbank CHR+NAM image loading for a more detailed title screen
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129103)
This version adds Chase, Snail Maze Game, updated versions of Denine's games, and fixed resetting in Theremin. But now I'm worried that we might get in trouble with Sega because the layouts and music are almost exactly the same as in the SMS BIOS.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129109)
tepples wrote:
  • Ask Krill to slim Auge down to 16K if possible so I can pair it with another 16K game; I noticed it had a lot of unused space

I'd be able to reduce the code to fit below 16K but not the entire game (PRG+CHR).
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129110)
If you can fit it all in a 24592 byte NROM-128 image, that'd be fine. My menu already compresses CHR data into unused areas of other games' PRG ROM.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129111)
That shouldn't take too long to do, I'll send you a PM with it as soon as it I'm done.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129127)
DABG currently assumes horizontal mirroring for the scrolling levels, but is set to vertical mirroring in the pack.

I don't know how mirroring control works with the menu system or it's tools, but seeing as it has been a problem several times, maybe it'll be worth it to have the tools automatically get the mirroring bit from the ines header.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129128)
tepples wrote:
Ask about Sgt. Helmet Training Day
For what it's worth I did ask na_th_an about this, in his reponse to my inquiry about Sir abadol he said:
Quote:
I don't know if it's too late, but feel free to include this (or any future) games in your cartridges.

So if we can get a hold of him it sounds like his okay with including it, as he already gave permission to include Sir Abadol or any future games in the Action53 carts. Would be good to have his explicit permission for each title though. Perhaps Shiru can help us get in contact with them? Shiru is the one that posted about their work with Sgt Helmet afterall. So maybe he has better contact info for them besides PMs.

Quote:
Get me a serial boot cable so that I can stash the client in the app bank
I'll get that and a blank INL-ROM flash board packed up over the weekend so you can play around with it next week hopefully.

Quote:
Choose a headliner for the label and title screen
I don't know how necessary this is, if we feel that we really need one and don't have anything comparable to Streemerz this time around perhaps we can use love story since it took first place in the compo. I don't know if it would as fitting in the cartridge label like we did with streemerz since it's not quite as complete/polished. But it could be fitting in the title screen perhaps, but generic nesdev/action53 splash screen would work IMO.

Things are kind of bleeding together between threads, but this seems to be our general action53 compilation thread. We have permission to include NESpix, and I think it'll work out well. A few items need to be handled though. While NESpix is SNROM with battery backing, it's only 32KB prg (or less), and it only uses WRAM for saves. From what I can tell WRAM is untouched until you actually go to save the current project. So converting to our mapper seems reasonable and I should be able to convert it to use flash for saves.

My thought on making user flash available to any games/tools who choose to use it, is fix the first 8KB of the PRG-ROM to $6000-7FFF. For all intensive purposes that can always be there. Using fixed banks and only allowing flashing to $6000-7FFF provides some security to only allowing those two 4KB sectors to be erased/programmed. I'd like to ship Tepples a board with this configuration so he has it for his own testing purposes along with the serial bootloader cable if there are no objections to this configuration. This setup also makes things simple for the bootloader as it can operate with the basis that user flash is always fixed to $6000-7FFF. The bootloader code itself would have to be stored outside of these two 4KB sectors though along with all the other tools/games.

Perhaps we could make the menu smart enough to sense SRAM vs. Flash, so the same rom could work on both platforms as well. Alternatively we could have a separate build for each.

I really like thefox's idea about NESpix:
thefox wrote:
infiniteneslives wrote:
Curious what you guys think about it's <NESpix> inclusion with Action53 volume2.

I think it's a good idea. Including stuff like this and the serial bootloader could coax people into getting their feet wet with NES development. Which, with your suggestion about using Flash, immediately brings forth another idea: the graphics editor(s) could be used to edit graphics in some small game that is included in the cartridge.


Initially I thought that it might not be that reasonable as we need to actually figure out what game to do this with. But I think we have the perfect game now in our library for this use now that we're including CHASE. Not only is it a simple NROM game, but it also is meant to be a tutorial introduction to programming the NES with C. So it sounds like the ultimate matchup to get people interested in NES development. They can tweak the graphics to CHASE with the pairing of NESpix, then they can take it one step further and dig into Shiru's code.

The best way I can imagine this working is by adding some options to the menu of both NESpix and CHASE. In CHASE's menu, the option would be added to overwrite Pattern tables by selecting which of the three NESpix save slots to use. Alternatively this choice could be handled by the action53 menu, but it should be able to be done from within the CHASE rom alone. Additionally one would want to have the option within NESpix to copy CHASE's chr data into a selected save slot/project. This is necessary so the user can know which tiles are used for what once running in CHASE.

Part of me can't help but think we're biting off more than we/I can chew with all these elaborate ideas. If we're able to pull it off, I think it would be well worth it though. With all these additions beyond the compo entries it's starting to really feel like an action packed cart. ;)
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129130)
Good news: I think I've found a place to store mirroring configuration in the title directory.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129325)
I improved the builder.
  • Builder allows specifying the map mode (starting register $80 value) for an activity, which includes the mirroring and whether $8000 or $C000 is fixed.
  • Builder automatically guesses a suitable map mode. The mirroring fix is no longer needed, and I have to patch it out of Function now.
  • If $8000 is fixed, start with first 16K in both 16K banks; if $C000 is fixed, start with second 16K in both 16K banks. This makes NMI redirection trivial.
  • Combining two NROM-128 games into one 32K bank is more automated.

Current ROM contents:
  • Games (13): 2048, Auge, Chase, DABG, Function, Love Story, MilioNESy, PCB Artist, RHDE, Sir Ababol, Sgt. Helmet, Sliding Blaster, Snail Maze Game
  • Toys (2): SFX Editor, Theremin
  • Blank space: 5 32K banks
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129326)
infiniteneslives wrote:
Part of me can't help but think we're biting off more than we/I can chew with all these elaborate ideas. If we're able to pull it off, I think it would be well worth it though. With all these additions beyond the compo entries it's starting to really feel like an action packed cart. ;)


I agree, these idea's are amazing! I can't think of any other games off hand where you can make a graphics hack from within the game itself. Sounds like a lot of progress is being made, I'd try it out but I can't remember which emulators support this (are there any powerpak mappers that work as well?).
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129329)
infiniteneslives wrote:
only allowing flashing to $6000-7FFF
How would that work? As far as I can tell, for FLASH 'PROMs you'd have to allow writes to the entire bottom (or top) 32K in order to turn on writing &// erasing mode, because the signaling sequence involves ROM A0-A14 (and keeping all of the higher address lines as all 0s or all 1s).

Not that widening the writable window to 32K is particularly onerous...
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129348)
Good point lidnariq. I forgot about the unlock commands being allowed writes and all.

I still think it'd be good to procedurally only allow flash writes to $6000-7FFF. Mainly because flash code has to operate from ram, and flash unlocks need to write to what's typically a mapper address. So you have to be concerned about what bank is mapped to $8000-FFFF if you were writing to flash in that address range. So we can still get comparable protection by procedural means alone.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129350)
Three ideas:
  • Writes to ROM automatically switch the CPU-visible memory space to the bottommost 32 KiB of the ROM. Really simple, but doesn't address emulator compatibility, and opens the entire bottommost 32 KiB to writes.
  • Add a banking register that allows the window at $6000-$7FFF to be banked between the 2nd and 3rd (or 61st and 62nd) 8KiB slices of ROM. This should let you restrict the writeable range to only the same 16 KiB that include the signaling sequence addresses.
  • Map CPU $6xxx to ROM 0x02xxx and CPU $7xxx to ROM 0x05xxx (or vice versa), which is noncontiguous but then it's entirely transparent and you get the desired 8 KiB RAM-like appearance. Requires adding CPU A12 and PRG A12 to the mapper IC.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129351)
If flash is at $6000-$7FFF, then where is the memory for holding the working copy of a document that exceeds 1280 bytes?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129421)
tepples wrote:
If flash is at $6000-$7FFF, then where is the memory for holding the working copy of a document that exceeds 1280 bytes?

Is this a thinly veiled attempt at promoting your own graphics editor? If so, I don't see how it would work in any case unless 8 KB WRAM is included in the cart, which doesn't make much sense if there would be only one application which would use it.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129423)
thefox wrote:
Is this a thinly veiled attempt at promoting your own

It wasn't intended as such. If I need to stop accidentally promoting things, I can leave for two weeks.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129431)
tepples wrote:
thefox wrote:
Is this a thinly veiled attempt at promoting your own

It wasn't intended as such. If I need to stop accidentally promoting things, I can leave for two weeks.

I doubt leaving for two weeks (or any amount of weeks) does anything useful. :)

I didn't intend to offend with my post, but your post simply struck me as bit odd. I mean you could have worded the same thing in a much less cryptic way. What was the point of the post, anyways? That extra WRAM should be included in the cartridge?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129432)
The point of the post is that I'm interested in hearing about what sort of techniques you might recommend to work with a document larger than 1280 bytes. I'm aware of the log-structured file system concept, but I was under the impression that that was intended more for occasionally saving individual documents than for using flash as essentially a swap file during an operation that might modify most of a large document. Should one expect to have to design an application around keeping the working copy in video memory, then reading back from video memory all the time, like in Videomation?

I'm just not entirely certain that retrofitting Chase to allow its graphics to be edited is feasible by July 1. Feel free to prove me wrong however.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129818)
Even if I had done another two-week withdrawal stunt, it would have mattered little because I haven't seen any more cat3 entries in 12 days. If we want to fill the space, we may need to extend the deadline. Here's the map that my builder printed, showing five unused banks:

Bank 0: Function, 2048
Bank 1: Auge, Sliding Blaster
Bank 2: Chase, Snail Maze Game
Bank 3: DABG
Bank 4: Love Story
Bank 5: MilioNESy
Bank 6: 8K entries
Bank 7: RHDE
Bank 8: Sir Ababol
Bank 9: Sgt. Helmet - Training Day
Bank 15: Menu

And I'm feeling more and more hesitant to keep Snail Maze Game on the cart. Its music and maps are identical to those of the Sega Master System BIOS.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129868)
My 64x32 grid Conway's Life simulator takes about 6.7kb currently and I think it would be a nice addition to the cart if I fix it up a little. I could fill up a 16kb half-bank with it, the sound effects editor and some other apps and toys that I would have written if I didn't know just how few apps there would be.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#129893)
NovaSquirrel wrote:
I could fill up a 16kb half-bank with [a bunch of] apps and toys

That'd be great. I'll have to ask Tom to relocate Theremin to $C000 and cooperate with PCB Artist's NMI redirection.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130195)
Not sure what the status of everything is, but USER on nintendoage has submitted an entry he would like to be considered for inclusion. http://nintendoage.com/forum/messagevie ... did=129587
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130200)
NESHomebrew wrote:
USER on nintendoage has submitted an entry he would like to be considered for inclusion.

Downloaded it, seems worthy, checked effective size in hex editor, requested source code for relocation into another game's unused space.

I also sent a PM to Tom about relocating Theremin to $C000 now that Nova is moving SFX Editor to his own submulti. But if INL wants to relocate PCB Artist to $C000 instead, that's fine too.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130201)
tepples wrote:
But if INL wants to relocate PCB Artist to $C000 instead, that's fine too.


sounds easy enough.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130211)
Thanks. Now I've made a tool for semi-automatically combining 8K games into a 16K bank, based on my old tool for combining 16K games into a 32K bank that I wrote back when Action 53 was BNROM-based. I used this to make a Theremin/PCB Artist submulti, and it appears to be working correctly.

Now the release is waiting on these:
  • Nova is working on Conway's Life and a FALSE interpreter.
  • USER sent source for The 1007 Bolts to NESHomebrew's email. It apparently uses some "alien" assembler syntax for which I plan to build a translator to ca65 the way I did for NESASM syntax when squeezing Munchie Attack into holes in LAN Master
  • Something else to fill about 4 more banks...?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130216)
I'd also like to finish Sliding Blaster (3 levels to go and a simple boss battle), which I put off to get more ideas while I work on the apps. FALSE shouldn't take very long to do since the editor is mostly done and the interpreter should be very easy to write.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130525)
Unless it's important that each multicart has a unique set of games, I don't see why some games or tools from volume 1 couldn't be included on volume 2 as well to fill the rest of the space, decided by a vote or whatever else.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130542)
I can sort of see where you're coming from given the returning minigames in each Mario Party. But if we ship a bunch of reruns, we might end up having to do more than the four volumes that I had planned in order to reach 53 quality games in a package that people are willing to pay $53 for. On the other hand, I guess I should plan for some games to get bigger during the remix compo. For example, RHDE will likely become a 48K to 64K game, and my artist is definitely going to give Concentration Room an overhaul to bring it up to at least 32K.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130585)
More games would likely take weeks to months to complete, and it would be nice to get the cart released sometime during the summer like originally planned.
Games from volume 1 could possibly be given new levels or graphics or tweaked a bit in minor ways that wouldn't justify a remix compo version. I could definitely come up with some fun changes for Thwaite having messed with the code already for my first hack of it.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130586)
I see your point. If you can think of any worthwhile hacks of games from volume 1, I'd be willing to make a "hacks" category. (No p○n○s plz though.)

In any case, today I made a tool to translate user's "alien" dialect of 6502 assembly into a ca65-compatible dialect, and it builds and runs fine.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130589)
It would be quite easy to build Driar with another 38ish levels, but level design's really the hard part.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130748)
RFK clearance get! That fills one slot.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130749)
tepples wrote:
RFK clearance get! That fills one slot.


Nice! How are we doing for space?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#130750)
I've replaced Snail Maze Game with 1007 Bolts because the former's maps are a direct copy of the maps in Sega's version, which could get us in legal trouble.

RFK took one 32K slot and some CHR space in the unused portions of other games' slots, leaving us with 14 games, 2 toys, and four free 32K slots. That can change based on a couple things. For now I'm assuming that NovaSquirrel's FALSE interpreter won't push his app collection above the 16K that I've already allocated to SFX Editor. And Pong 198x could be re-added if its redesigned single-player mode matures.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#131042)
Today in #nesdev:

<tepples> I don't think Snail Maze Game will make it into Double Action 53. There's plenty of space, but the maps are identical to Sega's.
<Roth> No probs. I kinda figured that would end up happening, so I'm not too butthurt. Only slightly ; )
<tepples> If I were doing it, I'd make an Eller's algorithm maze generator and just store the seeds
<Roth> Eh, it was what it was. I wanted to try and port something simple to get back into the swing of programming, so it was a success in that regard.
<tepples> thanks for understanding
<Roth> no biggie
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#132951)
I would like to submit this to the multi-cart, but it requires about 200 bytes of code to execute before the menu initializes. The rest of the code compiles to less then 1KiB, and can fit comfortably in the apps bank.

also since I'm kind of free now, Is there anything I can do to help prepare this volume of action 53?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#132957)
I wonder what the core dump could be used for. Is it that the player would hold a button while pressing Reset to see a core dump of the most recent game?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#132962)
tepples wrote:
I wonder what the core dump could be used for. Is it that the player would hold a button while pressing Reset to see a core dump of the most recent game?

Yes for that purpose (also to see what the nes starts out with on cold boot), but with v1.2 no button holding on reset is necessary. When the boot section is installed at reset*, and the app part as an menu activity, all the user has to do is start the activity to view the ram contents since reset.

*: with chr ram bank switching, and erasing a magic string as well.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#132963)
It's possible, but I'll have to wait for INL to OK it because it'd involve running two more traces to the CHR RAM.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#132964)
tepples wrote:
It's possible, but I'll have to wait for INL to OK it because it'd involve running two more traces to the CHR RAM.
oops, I didn't even think about that. If it's too expensive, I can change it to use the button routine from 1.1 or something.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134722)
So unless there are any more last minute entries that I'm not aware of, should we set a cutoff date so we can finalize the build?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134775)
I'll vote +1 to a cutoff.

If it's ok, I would like to see the current build to see where we are at. (at least from here)

can old (before 2011) homebrew games be possibly included? While gathering games to showcase for a play-through marathon, I may have found a few that could be included, but I realize that authors might be hard to contact. Filler like famitracker music, or a gallery of concept screen shots would work as well, considering there has been recently some very neat things posted in that area.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134776)
43110 wrote:
can old (before 2011) homebrew games be possibly included?

Yes. The first multicart included Munchie Attack, a very old homebrew by Memblers. These five things are necessary:
  1. The author can be contacted, or the ROM is already distributed under a license that allows distributing copies for a fee. (This includes all free software licenses.)
  2. The game isn't an obvious infringement, such as using Mario or Pac-Man sprites.
  3. The game uses NROM (#0), CNROM (#3), BNROM (#34), AOROM (#7), or UNROM (#2 or #180).
  4. The game is playable with a standard controller.
  5. The game is (subjectively) better than most of the games on Action 52.

Quote:
Filler like famitracker music, or a gallery of concept screen shots would work as well

Get permission and I'll see what I can do to fill the remaining 128 KiB out of the projected 512 KiB cart. I'll also bug NovaSquirrel to finish his "toy box", even if it means removing the unfinished FALSE interpreter.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134798)
My FALSE implementation had weird bugs involving corruption of the interpreter's stack, which I had trouble isolating and mostly came up in more complex programs. Typing in programs without a keyboard (I don't have a Famicom and a keyboard, and assume most people don't, so I never added support for that) is annoying enough that I didn't really see fixing it as very urgent.

I made a build of the toybox with just Life:
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134801)
We could always fill the extra space with some original music. I'm sure we could find some willing participants.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134861)
Today NovaSquirrel and I were recording a few gameplay videos to promote DA53. We managed to get a complete 5-round game of RHDE on DVD+RW. But during the process, we found problems with a few of the games. Currently Function and Sliding Blaster are failing lot check.

Flicker
Hardware showed a serious flicker problem with 1007 Bolts and Function that the more lenient FCEUX did not. It's as if the PPU update code doesn't finish on time.
  • In 1007 Bolts, once I got to the first speedup, the bolts flickered horribly. It turned out the OAM upload was at the end of the NMI handler, after all the game logic, instead of at the beginning. I moved it to the beginning, which fixed it.
  • The background in Function is "bouncy" in some CPU/PPU alignments, looking more like an Action 52 refugee at times. In FCEUX I noticed sprite 0 activity for some reason. It appears to be waiting for the end of vblank, busy-waiting about 16 more scanlines, and then enabling rendering. It also disables rendering early at Y=206, which causes known problems with OAM refresh. I'll try to get in touch with Denine.

Report from Nova
FALSE is out and Conway's Life is in. He's also given me clearance to drop his sound effect editor in favor of mine, though I'll have to patch out the battery support to get the builder to recognize it. He's made some minor improvements to Double Action Blaster Guys. But there's a crash bug related to pickups in Sliding Blaster that he's working on troubleshooting.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134864)
So out of the 4 people I PM today, 2 said yes, and 1 may not be visiting the forum anymore. If I incorrectly quoted anyone please correct me now.

For Super PakPak:
artoh wrote:
Hi,
I'd be happy if it got included in a multicart.
I might even have the original source so I could modify something if needed :)

and for Solar Wars:
ccovell wrote:
Yes, if you want to include it, please go ahead.

I know Solar Wars is CNROM with 4 pages, and thus will need those 2 traces to CHR ram, I hope that's not to much of a problem.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#134888)
Super PakPak and Solar Wars continue the multiplayer theme implied by the title. I'd probably have to put them on a separate "Multiplayer" page.

Function: Pass
Denine sent me a working copy.

Super PakPak: Patch possible
I need to have an unused area in each game's fixed bank so that Reset presses go back to the main menu. I couldn't find an obvious unused area in the fixed bank, so I'll have to move some of the game's init code to bank 2.

Solar Wars: Patch possible
This CNROM game also lacks space in PRG ROM for reset code, but fortunately, it doesn't appear to use CHR bank switching for tile animation or raster effects. I plan to hack it to UNROM so that it doesn't need the extra RAM by patching writes to $C2C0-$C2C3 to instead decompress 8K of CHR data.

SFX Editor rewrite: Patch possible
The official version of this uses MMC1. I'd need to make a compile-time option to cut out all save-related code.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135000)
While tracing through init code of Solar Wars to see what could be relocated, I found a bunch of bad practices: writing to $2004 to clear OAM, use of $0D as black (which confuses some TVs), lack of compression of nametables, etc. There's also some apparently unused code related to the NerdTracker II playback code at $8006, but I have no idea what it's supposed to be doing. Is there any source code for this so that I can skim it for other bad practices and rearrange it to free up fixed bank space? I seem to remember source being released a long time ago, but I don't know if it was the 1.5 version containing all the bug fixes, and it was incomplete due to drama related to NT2 and the sorry state of APU documentation at the time.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135372)
Silence? Then I guess I'll have to mapper-hack Solar Wars the hard way, based on the binary rather than the source. Here's what I plan to get done before the end of this weekend:
  1. [done] Donate plasma
  2. [done] Patch SRAM save code out of SFX Editor
  3. [done] Get flu shot
  4. [done: $00C0-$017F] Find unused RAM areas in Solar Wars to use as scratch space for decompressor
  5. [done] Do laundry
  6. [done] Expand my robotfindskitten implementation to 47 NKIs
  7. [done: exitpoint=FFE0] Inform the builder that a ROM already has a reset patch (and thus needs no unused area)
  8. [done] Get Super PakPak running in Action 53
  9. [done] Relocate the init code of Solar Wars to the expanded PRG ROM
  10. [done] Add CHR decompression to Solar Wars
  11. [done; get it here] Upload a build of Solar Wars (UNROM version) for you all to test
  12. [done] Get the sound effect editor running as a Super PakPak subgame
  13. [done] Combine Life with PCB Editor and Theremin
  14. [done] Get Solar Wars running in Action 53
  15. Test every game on hardware
  16. Upload a build of Double Action 53 for you all to test
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135373)
Front page saves the day:
NESdev.com wrote:
Solar Wars A freeware Scorched Earth type of game. Code, graphics, and design by Chris Covell, music by Memblers, and sound code by Bananmos. Here is the source code.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135377)
In Diary.TXT in the zipfile, ccovell wrote:
Because the music is entirely his work, and the code isn't mine, I won't be including his music data.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135556)
tepples wrote:
While tracing through init code of Solar Wars to see what could be relocated, I found a bunch of bad practices...


I was young. I needed the money. :-(
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135558)
So long as it works on hardware it's fine, especially for something that old. I hope my UNROM hack works on hardware; if you can give me feedback on anything that breaks, I'd appreciate it. A true overhaul would require Memblers to port his music to the subset of FamiTracker supported by Shiru's FamiTone.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135561)
tepples wrote:
A true overhaul would require Memblers to port his music to the subset of FamiTracker supported by Shiru's FamiTone.


I'm not sure what that would gain. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. :P

With my experience of putting Solar Wars on Garage Cart, I can say that yeah $0D color is a problem (there is a revision of Garage Cart for it, I think that snuck into my menu palette as well). Also I believe there is still a bug that very rarely will crash the game, just a black screen on the start of a round. And when I put it in Garage Cart, I also had to base it on the binary, I believe at the time Chris didn't have access his copy of the revised source. It was easy to patch though, as I'm sure you've seen with your UNROM version.

Also regarding NT2, I think the only problematic version was the very first release (when NT2 used the PC speaker for sound). Bananmos built his own ROM emulator for development, so later versions were well tested.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135565)
All 16 games are in, and the ROM is full.

17-22: Multiplayer
Double Action Blaster Guys
RHDE: Furniture Fight
robotfindskitten (2 player version)
Sliding Blaster
Solar Wars
Super PakPak

23-32
1007 Bolts
2048
Auge
Chase
Function
Love Story
MilioNESy
PCB Artist
Sir Ababol
Sgt. Helmet - Training Day

Toys
Conway's Life
Sound Effect Editor (4 channel version)
Theremin

There is a rare bug in my UNROM hack of Solar Wars where it appears to fail to generate terrain. I can't reproduce it reliably enough to be able to tell if it was in the original. I had to replace robotfindskitten with my own version when some bug was corrupting the space character's tile in VRAM. And MilioNESy can occasionally fail to return to the menu on a soft reset. RHDE has some scoring that I'd like to fix later and needs a tutorial. But oh well; there's always the remix competition.

Before beta 1 I want to have these done:
  • 64x56 pixel, 4-color screenshots of all games (some are missing currently)
  • Short descriptions of all games (some are missing currently)
  • Basic testing of your own game and others to try to get them to misbehave
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135585)
Sliding Blaster needs its description changed to reflect the new default controls:

+ Aim
A: Boost
B: Fire
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135605)
Thank you Tepples for all the multi-cart perpetration work you've done. Here's my notes from testing on NTSC with powerpak.

Menu:
- The 1007 bolts description should say that start button starts the game, because the game requires it but doesn't itself inform the player.
- The Sliding Blaster description should also note that player 2 enters by pressing a+b.

Double Action Blaster Guys:
- If you start a Both->Fight game, then any single player game will fail to start due to something still thinking it's in fighting mode.
- The final level sometimes crashes. I think maybe what happens is killing the re-spawned (is re-spawning a bug?) head causes a crash.

Sliding Blaster:
- Once you go into level edit, you can not start a normal game until reset.

Solar Wars:
- Title screen glitch scrolls up on certain PPU alignments. Only cosmetic.

Function:
- If emulators are correct, whatever raster trick it's doing fails on PAL systems.

MilioNESy:
- Soft reset fails every time for me.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135615)
Fixed the issues regarding DABG's fight mode and Sliding Blaster's edit mode. I also fixed the issue where powerups would stay enabled if they were turned on for multiplayer, though it won't remove any powerups already on the screen. Consider that an easter egg?
I'll try and figure out DABG's final level crash issue if I can find some time, or see if I can tweak anything that makes it stop happening (I think it's too many bombs, since normally it isn't stuffing that many objects into the enemy table).
Edit: Respawning is intended behavior, since it just uses the same behavior as normal levels. Also, now bombs have half as high a chance of being dropped when there are two bosses. Hopefully that helps?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135644)
I found why soft reset doesn't work on MilioNESy.
MilioNESy's init writes $03 to the multicart register $80, but the register selection is left set on Mode ($80) and not Outer bank ($81). So the reset stub ends up writing $ff to Mode which fails to change the Outer bank back to the menu.

Edit: The mapper writes are at $FBBC and $FBC1, and I believe it's intended to be horizontal mirrored BNROM.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135646)
Nova: Somehow you must have uploaded last year's DABG again. I think that's why I made my RHDE and robotfindskitten makefiles automatically generate date stamps for the zipfiles.

43110: Thanks for finding that. So here's my to do list before beta; you can help!
  1. Wait for Nova to reupload DABG
  2. With a hex editor, find unused byte ranges at the end of DABG and Sliding Blaster
  3. Run MilioNESy's init code in a debugger, watching for instructions that write to $5000-$5FFF and $8000-$FFFF, so that my patcher can BIT them out
  4. Take 64x56 pixel, 4-color screenshots of the five activities that lack an up-to-date screenshot

Activities that need a new screenshot:
  • robotfindskitten (existing screenshot is of the version that was replaced for having corrupt graphics when run in the multicart)
  • Solar Wars
  • Super PakPak
  • Conway's Life
  • Sound Effect Editor (existing screenshot is of Nova's quick and dirty version)
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135648)
Should be the newest version now. I deleted the .zip for the old version so I don't accidentally reupload it anymore.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135684)
@tepples
2. All in ines offsets.
- DABG: $69fc - $8009
- Blaster: $3896 - $4009
- Conway's Life has an uncompressed CHR page with 6144 bytes of blank tiles
- and of course robotfindskitten has lots of reserved space for non kitten items.
3. I didn't find more mapper writes other then at $FBBC and $FBC1
4. Attached is a set of 64x56 screens.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135693)
So DABG didn't get much bigger but Sliding Blaster did. I've patched out MilioNESy's mapper writes, set the appropriate map mode, and added the new screenshots.

Quote:
recursive.png

Cute ;-) Thanks for the screenshots.

The last thing is descriptions for these:
  • Sgt. Helmet - Training Day
  • Theremin
  • Anything else you can think of

Once I release the first "beta" version, where should we publicize this?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135696)
Here's the latest copies of Love Story and Theremin with various bug fixes.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135843)
For Sgt.Helmet, the description could be:

Shoot enemies, push boulders and collect keycards to unlock doors and advance through the mission.
Pick up 5 bombs along the way to drop off at the target.

+: Move
A: Shoot
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135885)
Thanks. Now the only thing holding up beta is the occasional crash when picking things up in Sliding Blaster, even the latest version (dated October 27).
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135897)
Code:
  SoundEffectWithDebounce:
    lda CollectSoundDebounce
    bne NotAmmo
    ...
    lda #15
    sta CollectSoundDebounce
    rts
  NotAmmo:
    cmp #METATILE_HEALTH
    bne NotHealth
    ...
    jmp SoundEffectWithDebounce
  NotHealth:
Originally NotAmmo just led to an RTS before I added the health pickup. Now it doesn't, and NotAmmo will assume that A contains a metatile ID when it's really the countdown value for CollectSoundDebounce. If it's 3, NotHealth will not be branched to, and the code inside will jump to SoundEffectWithDebounce.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135916)
Congratulations on finding and fixing the underlying issue.

It's time to get some test coverage for real. Find people to fire up a PowerPak or an emulator that supports the Action 53 mapper (iNES #28) and get to work.

(As usual, if this gives a "File Not Found" error on your PowerPak, you'll need to download MAP1C and install it in your CF card's POWERPAK folder.)
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135929)
I hope I'm not too early to be thinking about this, but I thought about the cart label a bit and worked on it for a few days.
This is so far what I got:
Attachment:
2014-11-02_vol2-beta-label-wip.png
2014-11-02_vol2-beta-label-wip.png [ 44.85 KiB | Viewed 5347 times ]

It's all SVG vectors except for the bitmap screens which currently are just rips from the multi cart menu. Once it's complete and balance I'll post a link to the final SVG file.

Some questions:
  • Is the idea composition and style OK?
  • Is the infiniteneslives banner OK or should it be changed/removed?
  • I'm having difficulty imagining the exact poses of the the RHDE pair, though I'm sure it should feature a poli and a volci fighting.
  • Is the last pair of characters OK? if not what would be better?
  • Anything else?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135950)
I intended for "Double" to be in the TrueType version of the Chicago font published by Apple (Identifont sample). If you don't have a Mac handy, you can start with the bitmap version of Chicago, run a couple passes of Scale2x, and fix sharp corners. (I've done so and attached the result.) Later I'll attach a high resolution version of the Action 53 logo.

Earlier, when I was working on remaking RHDE's title screen in Blender in response to the "MS Paint is eww" reaction that my first title screen got, I envisioned a poli carrying a chair behind him and a volci hitting him over the head with a baseball bat. I need to finish that.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135959)
tepples wrote:
I intended for "Double" to be in the TrueType version of the Chicago font published by Apple (Identifont sample).

Why is the lowercase "L" different from your version?

Quote:
If you don't have a Mac handy, you can start with the bitmap version of Chicago, run a couple passes of Scale2x, and fix sharp corners. (I've done so and attached the result.)

Looks good, but why would go through all this trouble when you can use the preview feature in pages like this to get a reasonably sized PNG (with alpha!) of any text you want?

EDIT: It's not actually PNG, this page generates a GIF, but it's trivial to put that against a white background and invert the colors to generate an alpha channel you can apply to a solid color layer.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135964)
I've customized Chicago to have a lowercase L distinct from capital I. And making the pixel art myself gives me finer control of the font size and the like than the previewer widget you linked.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135976)
tepples wrote:
I've customized Chicago to have a lowercase L distinct from capital I.

What a coincidence that the game in the multicart with "Double" in its title uses the same customized Chicago: :P
Image
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135981)
I still don't think fonts like Chicago and the classic 8 bit one (I forgot the name) are OK to simply use in a legal and moral sense. But since you guys are using them freely I don't think there are problems with that? Please educate me.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#135983)
The font in NovaSquirrel's work (FHBG, DABG, Sliding Blaster, and Conway's Life) and most of my pre-RHDE NES work (Concentration Room, Russian Roulette, Thwaite, Password Demo, and ZapPing) is an 8x8 rendition of Susan Kare's Chicago that I first made for the Who's Cuter tech demo. I used Chicago for "Double" in the DA53 logo because DABG uses Chicago.

Bitmap fonts are not copyrightable, as I've explained before. The font designer can apply for a design patent, but even if Ms. Kare had patented Chicago in 1984 when the Mac first came out, it would have expired back when NESticle was still popular. So all your 8x8 font are belong to everyone.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136129)
For "RHDE characters goes here" in this label mockup, you might want to trace the guy hauling the chair and the guy swinging the bat in this render.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136196)
Edit: Moved file to wiki.

Image

This is the finished label.

The file is a 65mm by 108mm SVG file that should crop to around 55mm by 98mm. Inkscape glitches on the logo and doesn't render the line widths correctly. If you need a bitmap render of this, open the file in GIMP and type in your desired DPI (like 600) in the Resolution field. The fonts are baked into the file expect for the notice at the bottom which uses the font "Droid Sans".

If any adjustments are needed, I'll just update the file at that URL.
Double Action 53 Release Candidate
by on (#136635)
A freeze in Solar Wars was fixed.

There hasn't been much beta feedback, and I hope that's good news. (Or did we fail to publicize it enough?) So I'll put out the first release candidate incorporating this fix. If this version is accepted for release, hex edit "R.C.#1" near the end of the ROM to say "#00001" or the like.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136679)
I have in mind some aesthetics improvements and features (like more NKI), but maybe those can wait until the remix volume and master release.

Not that infiniteneslives has to reply personally, but are we still on his radar, or should we give him a heads up?

Also, this weekend I might actually might be able to get this tested by other people.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136688)
RC 1 should not be released. A stack overflow bug was discovered in Solar Wars. (No, I'm not talking about that Image Stack Overflow.) I still need to get the fix patched into my UNROM mapper hack so it can be tested.

But yes, someone should try to get a hold of INL to inform him that the RC series has begun.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136712)
tepples wrote:
But yes, someone should try to get a hold of INL to inform him that the RC series has begun.


I'll contact him.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136749)
NESHomebrew wrote:
tepples wrote:
But yes, someone should try to get a hold of INL to inform him that the RC series has begun.


I'll contact him.

He is now aware :). Was there any interest in making this a boxed release?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136764)
For some reason the menu glitch is present in DABG again. Old version in RC 1?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136769)
Could you describe how to trigger this menu glitch?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136771)
tepples wrote:
Could you describe how to trigger this menu glitch?

I assume this is referring to how the menu didn't reset being in a 2-player fight mode. Holding turbo and killing player 2, and then starting a player 1 game notices player 2 is nonexistent and assumes you won fight mode again. I really should start putting version numbers on things.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136782)
So last night until morning I got RC1 tested a bit by other kids. Most kids and teenagers there wanted to do other things but there was at least one kid who played the entire time. Favorite games were DABG, robotfindskitten, and Solar Wars. The other games where also briefly played. RHDE was tried for just one round but the game was too confusing to pick up right away. To my confusion another kid said he had played super pakpak (and later lawn mower) "on the gameboy" before :?. After a few hours I had to leave the room for the rest of the party so I just let them play my selection of homebrew games contained on my powerpak (like thwaite and "A pirated copy of LJ65"). As the party came to a close, the kids playing Solar Wars experienced the stack overflow bug. No surprise to me that even the mapper got stuck. So yeah, it was an awesome time.

@NovaSquirrel: That is correct.

NESHomebrew wrote:
Was there any interest in making this a boxed release?
I'm sure collectors like boxes. I don't, but that's because I care more about an included manual than I do a box that would most likely have the same art as the game label.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136784)
43110 wrote:
So last night until morning I got RC1 tested a bit by other kids.

Thanks for the extra test coverage.

Quote:
RHDE was tried for just one round but the game was too confusing to pick up right away.

If you have suggestions for what changes to make before the remix compo version to make it less confusing, put them in a reply to this post if you don't mind.

Quote:
I'm sure collectors like boxes. I don't, but that's because I care more about an included manual than I do a box that would most likely have the same art as the game label.

Then we may need to figure out who will write the manual. Would printing the existing on-screen help be enough, or is something more detailed needed (especially for RHDE)?

I noticed DABG got a little bigger with the addition of the build date.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136793)
A manual would probably be helpful if people aren't familiar with the games. I don't know if it needs to be printed, but at least a very obvious download on the "For Sale" page. I'd say that most of them are straight forward, but unless you know the ins and outs of it you might totally miss things (like mouse/zapper support on the menu).
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136796)
You could try to make a single-sheet manual; it can be both printed and downloadable, if that helps some people.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136862)
The thing I like about video game manuals is not so much the "press A to do things" line of explanation (for which the multicart menu takes care of), but rather things like the game setting, pictures for each of the available actions. original concept art, things like that. Last year is has been said that we should collaborate on this on a wiki and I agree. Perhaps I should start with a wiki page with what would be nice to have in a video game manual. Maybe by the time the master release comes around we'll have enough art assets and text excerpts to compile into a sizable manual.
--------

That said I like the single-sheet manual idea, and I'm writing it now. It's a folded sheet with the front titled "action53 Quick Start Guide" (not double because this would hopefully be generic), and in it will be several brief sections explaining things like:
  • Operation of the multi region chip (I assume it works like the ciclone)
  • Basic controls of the menu including how the reset buttons returns to the menu
  • Explanation of the controller symbols in the menu (a plus sign could either mean all directions or a combination of a and b)
  • SNES mouse wiring diagram.
  • if there's room, "Health and Safety"
  • Something else that should be explained?
and on the back would be 3 URLs to nesdev, nintendoage, and infiniteneslives.
--------

I asked INL about what the box would be like and with his permission I'm posting what he said in that regard.
Quote:
As for traditional or bitbox options both are possible. In general small volumes of bit boxes are more cost effective due to the smaller initial investment because we can do batches of 1-100. Traditional boxes are lower cost each, but require a large volume of 250+ with a large initial investment. I do think we will easily sell well over 100 copies in a few months time, so traditional boxes are a viable option if we'd like to go that route.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136866)
I've made a draft of a precautions section.

http://wiki.nesdev.com/w/index.php/Action_53_manual
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#136980)
RC2 shall not be produced as is. While finding a game to use as an example in a screenshot of the menu in the manual, I discovered that the control description of Love Story has a copy-and-paste error. "Move cursor" needs to be changed to "Move". This can be fixed in a hex editor by replacing the word "cursor" in that game's description with spaces ($20). But be careful not to change descriptions of other games such as MilioNESy, for which "cursor" is appropriate.

The following hex patch to the (iNES headered) ROM will fix it:
Code:
6FA68: 20 20 20 20 20 20


But to see whether I need to issue a full RC3, I'd like people to look over all the game descriptions to see if there are any other problems or things that should be clarified.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo]
by on (#137234)
Has anyone else had a chance to test? I've had some single player emulator time, but I haven't had time to use the powerpak.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#137435)
Any news from INL?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#137816)
Okay time to get back on this horse...

I've got the first batch of boards assembled and on hand now, there are 150ish total IIRC. I flashed one up with RC2 and played all the games and everything looks good to me. I'm really impressed with the line up you guys came up with this year, a few surprises showing up from the 'distant' past was certainly nice to see.

I've been talking with 43110 about the boxes, so we have some decisions to make there assuming he can come up with some artwork to fill it. My suggestion is to blow up the label for the front cover, and maybe a few screen shots on the back with some verbiage taken from the manual. But assuming we're opting to provide a box at all, we can choose from a traditional cardboard box, or a bitbox from stoneagegamer. Bitboxes are a little easier to manage for small volume releases as they can be purchased in small volumes of 100 or less for around $3ea including printed insert. I have a local print shop that I've been using for traditional boxes that does good work with a nice glossy protective finish. The price varies based on qty, ($5ea @100, $2.56ea @250, $1.70ea @ 500). If we choose to invest the funds upfront for traditional boxes I'd recommend the 250 qty for $641 total. Then we can decide how much to mark it up for the CIB option, perhaps around $8..?

The manual preview I saw looks good. I kinda like the black and white effect. That also gives us some lower cost options. Full color manual prices vary based on page count and quantity, I can quote those if that's something we'd like. But the simplicity and low cost of the black and white manual sounds fitting to me. The only question is if we want to include the manual with loose carts, or just CIB's?

We do also have to settle on a design for the label on the back of the cart. I swapped the "CAUTION" label size on my cases for a standard avery size 1 x 2-5/8" which is size #8160. I've made up a generic one we can use, or we can come up with whatever we'd like. CAUTION label template

Yesterday I picked up a big batch of clear cases to cover the LE's for compo prizes. So I'll put those and some RE grey's together so they're only awaiting the final rom and stickers.

I'd like to get the labels printed off at the same time we do the boxes if possible assuming we are doing a box. And if we opt for a long term release of volume 1 in conjunction with the vol2 release, then we can get ourselves a better group discount on labels. I might have another separate title I can squeeze in at the same time to get us all a better deal on printed materials.

One other minor thing, I have new black plastic dust sleeves now too from videogameboxprotectors. I expect between sleeves, labels, and cases all being sourced myself this year we'll at least get the sleeves for free compare to last year's cost of ~$15ea for grey. But I'll have to run the exact numbers once we iron things out.

If we can get these last items sorted out before the end of the year, then I think we're in good shape to release in January. If we've got a good idea how we're handling the next compo perhaps we can make one big giant update and release of the compo all together.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#138547)
OK I'm back from the holidays. Let's see if we can pull together to get this released.

The manual is done, and I'm designing the box so that the base template can work for all 4 volumes. So whatever is decided about the further production of volume 1, hopefully box can be easily made for that as well.

As I'm filling out the back of the box now, is there any words or logos I should include? Maybe the logos of nesdev and nintendoage?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#139792)
Hey guys, sorry it took so long but I'm done with the box. Since a google search can find the page I put it at, I'm posting the link to all the printed materials here.

https://jroatch.nfshost.com/2014/nes/action-53-vol-2/

Questions? comments? errors or typos? let me know.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#141506)
Are we waiting for anything else? Does there need to be any more testing etc before we work out production etc?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#141916)
I might end up having to make one last change to RHDE before shipping, as I was unable to locate a contributor.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#141984)
RC3 has two changes:
  • Love Story: Removed "cursor" from description
  • RHDE: replaced build theme with an arrangement of an Ivan Larionov piece
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#141986)
I'll test this out tonight.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#141998)
To be honest, I was certain that RC#2 with the description patch was the final ROM except if further bugs were found.

Could I suggest the old song remain for this compilation, and use the new song for further versions of RHDE?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142000)
There was a bug: a potential legal issue. The old "build" theme in RHDE was essentially a cover version of the bass line from "Tetris New Melody" (OCRemoved). If you can put me in touch with "AM.FM.GM", the recording artist who made it, I might consider restoring the old one.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142049)
tepples wrote:
There was a bug: a potential legal issue. The old "build" theme in RHDE was essentially a cover version of the bass line from "Tetris New Melody" (OCRemoved). If you can put me in touch with "AM.FM.GM", the recording artist who made it, I might consider restoring the old one.

Do you not have rights to your own rendition of a tune?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142050)
The old build theme wasn't my rendition as much as a straight cover version, and cover versions are derivative works subject to a copyright owner's exclusive right. Unlike with sound recordings, the law provides no compulsory license for inclusion of a musical work in an audiovisual work (such as a video game), meaning that use without a license is infringement of copyright. And if there is no way to contact the composer, no license is available.

The new build theme ("Kalinka for RHDE") is my rendition of another composer's work ("Kalinka" by Ivan Larionov), but because the work was published more than 95 years ago and the composer died more than 70 years ago, the copyright has expired.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142175)
I've got my local print shop working on proofs for the box and labels. Should have those to share next week, then we'll hit the presses. Should only take a week to get those printed off.

FINAL ROM
Aside from the printed materials I've got a slew of carts assembled just waiting on the final rom programming and stickers to be applied. I haven't tested RC3 for myself yet, but RC2 worked just fine on final hardware. Think we'll be good to call the rom final by next Friday (3/6/2015)? If so, then I can start flashing carts next weekend. Should have printed materials complete shortly afterwards too.

RELEASE DATE
If that all goes as planned I think we can set the release date tentative as March 24th. I'm actually quitting my day job March 13th, and then I'll be hitting the road early April. So setting the release date of that week will be best from my end that way I can get the initial wave of carts out the door before I move.

BOX PRINT QTY
So due to timing of the printed materials and another release I'm working on, we can actually get a pretty decent deal and aren't as subject to the higher pricing of lower qty's on boxes. We can effectively get them at the 500qty price point of $1.70ea. Basically qty doesn't matter much as we won't get high enough for the next break at 1k. Any votes on what quantity of boxes we should invest in? Last time around we sold 150 loose carts without much trouble over the course of ~7 months. CIB purchases typically make up the majority of sales especially in the beginning. I'm thinking 200 boxes should cover us long term. It's possible we'll run out later in life, but that should last us long enough. I suppose if we run out of boxes doing a reprint the following year assuming we kept printing boxes for new volumes in the future. If no one weighs in on the box qty I'll go with 200.

PURCHASE PRICE LOOSE CART
In the past we did $40 for loose cart and made ~$25ea. This year I'd like to include a dust sleeve and potentially a single page B&W manual. Prices of everthing have moved around a little as suppliers for everything isn't the same. But even with the addition of dust sleeve and manual I should be able to keep profit close to the $25ea with the $40 buying price. Do we have any desire to change that price point? Personally I think it's reasonable as-is, but that's for the community to decide. Keep in mind the prize clear carts for compo entrants will be free to them, compared to vol. 1 where they saved $5 off purchase.

ADDED COST OF CIB OPTION
Aside from our cost of $1.70 of the box, there are a couple other minor costs including styrofoam, and added time/packaging. Basically CIB's will cost us ~$2. What would we like to charge for the added CIB option? I'd recommend somewhere between $6-10. My gut says $8, if we're keeping the Loose cart at $40. If we opt to drop the Loose cart price to $35ish, then maybe +$10 for the box would make sense..?

VOLUME 1
Based on conclusion by crickets after my inquiry post it doesn't sound like we're of the mind to kick off a long term release of vol1 alongside vol2. Just want to mention/confirm that we have no such desires as a community. I do have a couple dozen labels left over from vol1, but I guess those aren't of much use as Streemerz prob wouldn't be included. On top of that we'd have to act quick to make a non-Streemerz vol1 rom and label, so doesn't sound like vol1 long term release is in the cards for a number of reasons..

MONEY....$
I've got our $2629.97 balance sitting in a specific nesdev savings acct with my bank. We're going to spend somewhere around $600 of that on printed materials, leaving us with close to $2k. I don't really plan on charging for the build of all the carts in one large sum, I'll just bill for carts as they sell as it's simpler to keep track of, and don't have much question about recovering my investments. So that money is available for whatever we'd like to do with it. I assume we'll have a future compo with prizes and such, but we'll earn quite a bit with vol2 sales also. Somewhere around $30/copy * 200ish copies = $6k, plus $2k we have now. Quite a bit of cash with that $8k... Perhaps that's a good argument for reducing sale price.. It'd be nice to see it go towards things like any hosting costs we may have, although I have no knowledge of what that entails other than Woahman was hosting us last I knew. I don't really have an issue sitting on this money as I have been. But I'd rather see it go towards something like we wanted, nor do I want people thinking I'm lining my pockets.. Just trying to be open about our available funds and my continued support to spend them as the community sees fit.

TAXES
Something I hadn't really thought much about until I filed taxes in spring of 2014 is how to handle this. I didn't have much for options when the time came, so I acted with the only legal conclusion I could come up with. Since nesdev isn't it's own taxable entity, I couldn't write a 1099 or equivalent to nesdev for it's earnings in 2013 for vol1 sales. Those sales were through my site/business, and from an IRS standpoint, the only thing I could really do was consider those sales earnings as a taxable earnings to my business. So in reality "I paid income tax on those vol1 sales". Truth be told, I didn't end up really paying much if anything for taxes on it based on my entire tax situation. I'm not really concerned about it, I mainly just wanted to be clear and transparent on how I handled it. That being said, if someone has a different legal proposal of a better or alternate way to handle things in the future, I'm willing to support or entertain the proposal. Keep in mind, somebody, somewhere probably have to pay taxes on these dollars unless we were to become a 501c3 non profit. I'm somewhat knowledgeable of our options there having once been the treasurer of a non-profit. Unless there's some other reason to go non-profit, I'd much rather just pay the taxes on the sales myself vs. going through all the work involved of becoming a 501c3. I suppose I could figure out exactly how much I'm paying in taxes on the earnings and subtract that from our available fund balance. But I'm not really too concerned about it personally, unless others are.

TRACKING SALES
Something I've been doing for other released titles on my site is to auto-forward all paypal invoice emails for cartridge sales to the developer. I'd propose that I do similarly for action53v2, and auto-forward invoice emails for all sales to someone(s), perhaps a moderator? Tepples? WhatULive4? others? I don't have to do this, but I like doing it as it keeps things transparent on my end, making it so I'm not the only individual with a real time veritably accurate pulse on sales. If I have email addresses, I can get that setup and run a quick auto-forward test.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142176)
tepples wrote:
(music concerns)

Isn't the Tetris Company super-litigious about anyone using the same musical pieces (among other things)?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142178)
"Korobeiniki" is the only song I'm aware of where Tetris Holding actually holds a trademark, and then even on the melody. RHDE 341 used only the bass line of "Tetris New Melody" (a fan-made cover version of "Korobeiniki"), intentionally avoiding the trademarked melody. But something called to my mind that the composer of the bass line of the cover version might object. So I switched it to "Kalinka".
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142404)
Good to hear things are moving along Paul, and good luck in the future with the move etc!

If you want to add NESHomebrew@gmail.com to the auto-forward rule on your email I'm fine with that. I'd be in favor of others also getting it as well to help with transparency and any complications that could arise in the future.

In your experience, what percentage of people will opt-in for a box? I can't recall if you have had any releases that offered cart only as well as CIB. Regardless @ $1.70 it is relatively negligible in the grand scheme of things, and we can always offer discounted box-only options if we are left with a bunch of extras.

As for taxes, I'm not really familiar with how things work in the US (or Canada :oops: ) but I'd be in favor of refunding any costs derived from the contest. I know you aren't too concerned, but I don't see why you should have to be penalized for your generous contributions to the contest.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#142582)
I'll add NESHomebrew@gmail.com to the auto-forward list along with any others interested.

Generally early sales are near 100% CIB, but the nesdev crowd is a bit less of collecting crowd as well, so maybe we will be looking at around 80-90% CIB's..? After initial sales die down, it gets closer to a 50% mix. Over all probably looking at ~70% CIB. I think 200 is a good number for CIBs. It's also not the worst thing to only offer loose carts late in life. So CIB's are limited to some degree, they don't always have to be available.

As for taxes, I'll pay more close attention this time around to how much I'm actually getting taxed on these sales. If it's significant I'll probably deduct it from nesdev's balance, but I don't expect it to be, so we prob won't have to worry about it anyway.

Based on the silence, and most ppl being good with RC2 previously, I'm guessing we're good to call RC3 the final rom. Assuming Tepples set up the title screen text similar to last time I shouldn't have trouble manually tweaking the rom from here. I'm planning on starting to flash boards tonight/tomorrow. They can be reflashed in an emergency, or minor emergency depending on how many I've burned through and if it's worth the effort of reflashing.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#146316)
OK, make our selection when?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#147667)
Where is anyone?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#147668)
Dead! :twisted:
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#147721)
Lets get this show on the road...

Sorry things didn't work out to release before my move in late March. I'd like to get things wrapped up this week to support a release this weekend or first thing next week. I've got nearly everything I need. A few items to iron out, in reality I can make these last details work on my own, but would like approval/input from those who'd like to chime in.

Title screen:
We obviously need to remove "R.C. #3" from the title screen. For regular editions, I hacked the rom to just remove the line completely by replacing the text with spaces.

I'd like to do something special on that line for contributor's limited editions. We don't have to resolve this before the release necessarily since it's only LE's. I attempted to blindly hack the rom to display more than the current 7 characters in "R.C. #3" but failed. If Tepples could create a build that displayed more dummy characters on that line so I can hack em in a hex editor that'd be easiest. Then the question is what do we want to put on that line? My original thought was something to the effect of "Limited/Contributor Edition #1 of 15". But who get's what number then, perhaps based on each contributor's judging..? I had another idea to put "Special Thanks to <insert contributor name/alias>" or something like that to personalize each copy. I have no issue doing that so long as Tepples can make a build with enough space and I can get each contributor's input on what they'd like put in for their name/alias.

Sales tracking:
I sent NESHomebrew@gmail.com the request to auto forward and will work with him to setup the paypal invoices. If anyone else would like to be on the auto forward list let me know, I can setup as many as we'd like at any point.

Sale Price:
Never recieved input from my previous post discussing this, I'll go with what I put there if no one chimes in.

CIB vs Loose cart:
Here's my plan, please advise if you'd like to see something different:
CIB: Box, manual, dust sleeve, styro block, cartridge (probably provide box protector for $1 extra like I do with other titles)
Loose Cart: Cartridge & Dust sleeve. Print the manual yourself if you'd like a copy..? I might change my mind on this and include the manual since it's easily printed.

Back side Labels:
I included a template for the CAUTION label in my previous post and haven't received any other suggestions. I'll just move forward with my "default" option for these two labels unless someone chimes in asap. We can also put special text labeling limited contributor editions if we'd like.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#147729)
Quick title screen hack without waiting for a rebuild:
In a hex editor go to offset 0x07ef22, and change the three bytes there (0x1f, 0xef, 0x30) to (0xc0, 0xfe, 0x00). Those three bytes are the little endian address of the "R.C. #3" string followed by the number of pixels offset from the left.

Then put your null terminated string at 0x07fed0. Maximum string size here is 64 bytes (0x07fed0~0x07ff0f). The field is also limited by 128 pixels.

manual prints:
If the manual is easy to print, I suggest printing it. I personally had trouble getting it to print the correct size (Even though I did compose it lol), and I suspect people might have some difficulty printing the pdf file as is. If time allows I could try to learn how to make a letter sized (8.5in x 11in) template to print out. Edit: Nope, time is not allowing.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#148315)
If there's still time for minor bug fixes, I just found and fixed a minor bug in DABG involving the second player being able to make the first fall through a platform because I used the wrong addressing mode for a few opcodes. (zeropage instead of zeropage,x)

This and changing the build date are the only changes between this version and the version accepted for the multicart (there should only be a few bytes of changes and everything else should be in the same place). This doesn't affect 1-player mode at all and if it's too late then it shouldn't matter very much.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#148343)
I've produced Release Candidate 4a with a longer serial number field in the menu, no Zapper support in the menu (turned off at assembly time) because there are no games in the collection that use it, and the updated DABG.

Why 4a? Because RC4 is deprecated. (Also because of an issue that NovaSquirrel found.)
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#153698)
43110 wrote:
[b]manual prints:[/
If the manual is easy to print, I suggest prnt
ing it. I personally had trouble getting it to print the correct size (Even though I did compose it lol), and I suspect people might\] have some difficulty printing the pdf file as is. If time allows I could try to learn how to make a letter sized (8.5in x 11in) templte 7cto print out. Edit: Nope, time is not allowing.

There's actually a fairly easy trick to get it printed properly using adobe viewer alone. Have to get the print settings exactly right. If you're only printing one copy, enter "4,1,2,3" in pages to print, "multiple" under page sizing & handling, pages per sheet "custom 2 by 1", page order Horiz, print on both sides, flip along long edge, with portrait orientation. I printed them off "4,1,4,1,2,3,2,3" with 4 pages per sheet so I can print two manuals on one sheet of paper and then cut in half. Those options does put a little extra blank space in the binding/crease, but not enough to worry about.

My apologies on the delays with the release. I've got the sales webpage up and ready to go. Only left to do is put a link from my products page. I'm effectively ready for people to start checking out, just wanted to give you guys a cursory look before officially announcing the release. People can go ahead and start checking out if they'd like. I have all the carts flashed with the RC4a rom ("RC4a" text removed from title screen). I went with consensus by crickets on the majority of stuff I brought up in my last post. Still need to sort out some items for the Limited Editions though, I had hoped to tackle the LE details before releasing, but it's been my scape goat for far too long.

Fair warning I will be out of town for two weeks starting 8/26/2015. I was wanting to get this up at the beginning of the month so the initial rush would be behind me before I left, but here we are. I expect that I'll be able to ship all copies that sell between now and then before I leave. I'm not going to be completely out of commission while I'm on the road, so I'm going to make an effort to bring some copies with me so I can ship them without waiting for my return after Labor Day.

I set up paypal invoice autoforwarding with NESHomebrew, and can do the same for anyone else who would like it. I do need the new .zip for all the required GPL stuff assuming we're doing that all the same as last time around. The link on the current page is unchanged since last volume.

As for limited contributor's editions, I need to track down everyone's mailing address, and get their input on what text they'd like on the title screen of their copy. I figured I'd number them "LE #1 of 18" at a minimum, thought putting "2014 compo 1st place" for those that apply. I can put whatever people would like that fits though. Here's my list that NESHomebrew forwarded me, please let me know if I'm missing anyone. Does anyone know if the mojontwins are two people or not? I guessed maybe based on the name..? I'll ask them via their contact page on their site, but wasn't sure how we got a hold of them in the first place, don't think they ever responded to my PMs.

Anyone on this list (or anyone I missed), please feel free to email me (paul@infiniteneslives.com subject: "Action53 contributor info") with your mailing address and any special request on your title screen text. I'll reach out to those who don't reach me first in a couple days. I will ship LE's out as I get the needed details along with the cat3 snes-nes adapter prizes as well.
Code:
14 game developers + the second mojo twin?
compo organizer, NA host, nesdev host

1st Place, Cat3-3rd
Love Story, Theremin                      
   Tom Livak                                 

2nd Place, Cat3-2nd
RDHE: Furniture Fight, Robotfindskitten, sound effect editior, rom creation   
   Damian Yerrick                            

3rd Place
Function, MilioNESy             
   Denine                                    

4th Place
DABG, sliding blaster, Conways Life               
   Joshua Hoffman                            

Cat3-1st 
PCB Artist, cartridge production               
   Paul Molloy                               

Honorable mention 
   Pong guy                             

Honorable mention 
Flight, printed material artwork                      
   Jonathan Roatch                           

Non-compo game
solar wars                           
   Chris Covell     

Non-compo game
super pakpak             
   Artoh             

Non-compo game
1007 Bolts               
   User             

Non-compo game
2048                     
   tsone             

Non-compo game
Auge                     
   Krill             

Non-compo game
Chase                     
   Shiru             

Non-compo game
Sir Ababol, Sgt. Helment - Training Day         
   1-Mojon Twins     

Non-compo game
Sir Ababol, Sgt. Helment - Training Day         
   2-Mojon Twins     

Competition organizer
NESHomebrew

Nintendoage host
Dain

Nesdev host
WhoaMan
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#153711)
infiniteneslives wrote:
I've got the sales webpage up and ready to go. Only left to do is put a link from my products page. I'm effectively ready for people to start checking out, just wanted to give you guys a cursory look before officially announcing the release.

I'll give it a look tonight or this weekend.

Quote:
I do need the new .zip for all the required GPL stuff

None of the entries this time were GPL that I'm aware of, but I'll go through all the entries this weekend to see if the source code for any of them is available.

Quote:
2nd Place, Cat3-2nd
RDHE: Furniture Fight, Robotfindskitten, sound effect editior, rom creation
Damian Yerrick
[...]
Non-compo game
Sir Ababol, Sgt. Helment - Training Day
1-Mojon Twins
[...]
Nintendoage host
Dain

Aren't those "RHDE" and "editor" and "Helmet" and "NintendoAge"?
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#153715)
tepples wrote:
Quote:
I do need the new .zip for all the required GPL stuff

None of the entries this time were GPL that I'm aware of, but I'll go through all the entries this weekend to see if the source code for any of them is available.

Did you base your robotfindskitten implementation on the POSIX version? (Or did the other person who made a NES version?) POSIX base is GPL, others might not be.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#153723)
All code in my implementation of robotfindskitten is original, a clean room implementation of the functionality described in the RFK RFC (PDF). I do plan to include it in the source pack, as a source pack promotes what I see as the goal of Action 53, which is to encourage creation of a substantial* library of freeware for NES.


* Substantial in the Sony v. Universal sense.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#153731)
So this is actually the first time I get to see my work printed out, looks nice.

The font issue for the box was completely my fault but it looks OK anyway.
I did use a weird non-standard process (I "traced holes" even then) to make those in the first place so I should of expected bugs, but what was used to print the label that was different then the box? Because for some reason the line width for the blaster guys was printed thin. It's obviously too late to fix, but I would like to know the program pipeline so that I can avoid such issues in the future.

Edit: Looking into it, whatever program rendered the label SVG renders stroke-width=".75" as 3/4 of a millimeter rather then 3/4 of the current transform unit. It renders correctly when the width has a leading 0 like stroke-width="0.75".
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#153741)
Okay well I'm going to go ahead and announce the release. Feel free to point out any corrections that need made, but the only potential significant danger I was concerned about was if there were complaints on pricing. But the past 6 months has given more than enough time for comments as I went with my proposed pricing from my Feb post.


tepples wrote:
None of the entries this time were GPL that I'm aware of, but I'll go through all the entries this weekend to see if the source code for any of them is available.

Okay well either way, I consider you the resident expert when it comes to license requirements. Let me know the conclusion here and I'll adjust the webpage accordingly.

tepples wrote:
Aren't those "RHDE" and "editor" and "Helmet" and "NintendoAge"?

Yes, sorry I copied that from my scratch notes, nothing official coming from there anyway.

43110 wrote:
So this is actually the first time I get to see my work printed out, looks nice.

Yeah they turned out pretty good. Honestly I don't get all the complex file types, I asked the print shop if they had a preferred format and they said whatever I've sent thus far worked fine. I've never dealt with svg. I do recall them having issues with the label for some reason and I quick found a means to convert it to bmp. But looking at the files I sent, I'm pretty sure they converted from .svg themselves as my files don't have the thin lines. Future recommendation I would say use a format that isn't subject to interpretation .png or .bmp is prob best.
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#153743)
I do not recommend SVG either, unless that is the format worked as the source file and you are making the source distribution. PNG is better. But for printed out files you might want CMYK or spot colors (although there aren't any good free color matching systems for printing as far as I know)
Re: Results and Downloads posted [2014 Compo] / Double Actio
by on (#154403)
For everyone who will be receiving a copy of this, I apologize for the printing mistakes of incorrect fonts, odd thin lines and pixelation. I'm at fault for not rendering out the 600dpi sRGB bitmaps myself. That would of avoided all the trouble.

Fortunately the manual printed out perfectly, because it was a PDF file.